Along with the issues of Brexit and climate change, this election has been by the issue of institutional racism within mainstream politics, with both Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn attracting scathing criticism from the media and various outlets for fostering and Islamophobic sentiment within their parties. But with the upcoming election, is racism really a widespread problem within or has it been for political capital and point-scoring?

Jeremy Corbyn has come under fire for being perceived as failing to directly address the problem of within parties. Allegations of Anti-Semitism within the party have brought about the suspension of a number of high-profile figures such as Ken Livingstone and Chris Williamson, and an unprecedented investigation by the Equality and Human Rights Commission. Indeed, notable figures such as Joan Ryan, Anne Coffey, Angela Smith, Chris Leslie, Mike Gapes, Luciana Berger, Gavin Shuker and most prominently, Chuka Umunna have resigned from due to their inactivity in dealing with the problem of anti-semtiism. Furthermore, there has been an outcry within the mainstream media over the problem of within the with famous Jewish celebrities in the public eye Tracy Ann Oberman reference to the scourge of racism within and Corbyn perpetuating tropes, and Rachel Riley activists such as Owen Jones for Corbyn’s record against claims of and recently editing an anti-apartheid message to attack Corbyn for contributing to the supposed rise of Anti-Semitism within the party. Similarly, Chief Rabbi Mirvis described Mr Corbyn's claim that had "investigated every single case" of alleged anti-Semitism as a "mendacious fiction", and when probed about Anti-Semitism within the party by Andrew Neil in an election interview, Corbyn declined to four times. Corbyn himself has also come under fire for accidentally posting on groups known for peddling tropes and has also refused to break ties with Stop The War, who support groups such as STW, Hamas and Hezbollah. 

That said, many of Corbyn’s supporters point to his track record on tackling seen through co-sponsoring a motion calling for Yemen’s Jews to be given refugee status the UK and Corbyn one of his first PMQs Cameron to do more on Antisemitism. It should also be noted that in 2017-19 Jeremy introduced 20 new measures to combat antisemitism in the Party, that resulted in a number of against all reported cases of Anti-Semitism to eradicate any traces of within The Party. Similarly, In 2018, the JLM was invited to provide awareness training to those subject to disciplinary proceedings. In July 2018, Jewish Voice asked its members for help in delivering an "expanded " of antisemitism training to party members in response to what it called a "growing number of requests". In July 2019, appointed a liaison officer to improve the relationships with the Jewish community. Later in the month, issued an online leaflet entitled "No Place For Antisemitism" alongside related documents and videos, as the launch of a of educating members on how tropes, which arguably attests to dealing with Anti-Semitism. In the ten months since Jennie Fornby became General Secretary of there have been 1,106 referrals of antisemitism allegations. 433 of these were independently proven to have nothing to do with Party members, whilst a further 220 were dismissed due to there being no evidence of antisemitism and these complaints mostly consisting of vicious distortions, usually by Zionist activists. This ultimately has left 453 legitimate cases of out of a membership of 540,000, which translates to 0.08% of the Party membership, and in that sense, it could be argued that branding Corbyn as is incorrect.

Whilst whether is or not is for you to decide as we head into the upcoming elections is for you to decide, but in any case, shouldn’t be diminished and both Corbyn and Boris, should they win, need to address the problems of racism and sentiment within both the country and their parties and act as role models against the evil of racist rhetoric.

Jamali Blair, Wallington County Grammar School